Petrie – Australia 2019

LNP 1.6%

Incumbent MP
Luke Howarth, since 2013.

Northern Brisbane. Petrie covers suburbs on the northern edge of the City of Brisbane, including Bracken Ridge and parts of Aspley. It also includes parts of Moreton Bay Regional Council, including Redcliffe, Scarborough and Deception Bay.

No change.

Petrie was created as part of the 1949 expansion of Parliament, and has always been a marginal seat, changing sides on many occasions. The seat has been a bellwether seat since 1987.

The seat was first won by Alan Hulme (Liberal) in 1949. Hulme served as a minister in the Menzies government from 1958 until 1961, when he was defeated by Reginald O’Brien (ALP), and Hulme won the seat back off O’Brien in 1963, before resuming a ministerial role.

O’Brien retired in 1972, and the seat was won by Marhsall Cooke. Cooke was not preselected by the Liberals in 1974, and he retired, with John Hodges winning the seat. Hodges held the seat for the Liberals until the 1983 election, when Dean Wells (ALP) won the seat. Hodges won it back off Wells in 1984, and Wells went on to serve as a minister in Labor state government from 1989 until 2004.

Hodges was finally defeated by the ALP’s Gary Johns in 1987. Johns went on to serve as a minister in the last term of the Keating government, losing his seat to Liberal Teresa Gambaro in 1996.

Gambaro held the seat for eleven years before losing to Yvette D’Ath in 2007.

D’Ath was re-elected in 2010 amidst a large anti-Labor swing in Queensland was a minimal 1.7% swing to the Liberal National Party.

D’Ath narrowly lost Petrie in 2013 to the LNP’s Luke Howarth. The 3% swing to the LNP was just enough for the LNP to win with a 0.5% margin, making Petrie the most marginal Coalition seat in the country.

D’Ath returned to politics within six months, winning the state by-election in the overlapping seat of Redcliffe in February 2014. She now serves as Attorney-General in the Labor state government.

Luke Howarth won a second term in 2016, increasing his margin from 0.5% to 1.6%.


  • Corinne Mulholland (Labor)

Petrie is a very marginal seat and could well fall to Labor if the swing is on. Howarth bucked the trend in 2016, and it’s usually hard to do that twice in a row.

2016 result

Luke Howarth Liberal National 41,47544.7+4.1
Jacqui Pedersen Labor 35,61638.4-1.1
Sue Weber Greens 6,8407.4+2.9
Mark A WhiteFamily First4,7465.1+3.0
Catherine BuckleyLiberal Democrats2,8773.1+3.1
Andrew Charles TyrrellArts Party1,2391.3+1.3

2016 two-party-preferred result

Luke Howarth Liberal National 47,92651.6+1.1
Jacqui Pedersen Labor 44,86748.4-1.1

Booth breakdown

Booths have been divided into three areas. Booths in the City of Brisbane have been grouped as South.

Those around Redcliffe have been grouped as East, and the remainder around North Lakes and at the northern end of the electorate have been grouped as West.

The ALP won a majority of the ordinary election-day vote, with 50.3% in the south, 52.6% in the west, and 50% (an eight-vote majority) in the east.

The LNP won the seat thanks to a 55% majority in the pre-poll and a 54% majority amongst other votes. These votes collectively make up almost 45% of the total vote, and thus were enough to overwhelm Labor’s majority at the ordinary booths.

Voter groupLNP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes54.017,79619.2

Two-party-preferred votes in Petrie at the 2016 federal election

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Ben Raue is the founder and author of the Tally Room.If you like this post, please consider donating to support the Tally Room.